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Kgothatso Montjane has first shot at Wimbledon glory in doubles final

Kgothatso Montjane will be hoping to win big at Wimbledon.Photo: Phill Magakoe / AFP)

Kgothatso Montjane will be hoping to win big at Wimbledon.Photo: Phill Magakoe / AFP)

Published Jul 10, 2021


CAPE TOWN - South African trailblazing wheelchair tennis star Kgothatso Montjane is well on her way to achieving a feat of epic proportions after reaching the singles and doubles finals at Wimbledon.

The Limpopo-born athlete Montjane, currently No 5 on the ladies’ world wheelchair singles rankings, reached Sunday's final after her three-set win over Japan's Momoko Ohtani on Friday.

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Earlier in the week, Ohtani caused a major upset when she downed her fellow countryman and second-seeded Yui Kamiji in straight sets.

Since 2013, Montjane has played in 20 Grand Slams, and her best achievement has been six semifinal slots. Two of these were at Wimbledon 2018 (as a wild card) and 2019.

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In Sunday's final, wild card Montjane will go up against the top seed and world No 1 Diede de Groot of the Netherlands. De Groot has a fistful of 10 Grand Slam titles. These include Wimbledon 2018 and 2017 when he made her debut at the All England Lawn Tennis Club.

De Groot has not dropped a set en route to the final, whereas Montjane played three sets in each of her earlier victories. On Friday, Montjane survived a marathon 145-minute ordeal against Ohtani, the Roland Garros runner-up last year.

On Saturday, Montjane and her British partner Lucy Shuker will play four-time winners Brit Jordanne Whiley and Yui Kamiji of Japan in the ladies doubles final.

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Montjane and Shuker earned their finals slot after an upset win against the world No 1-ranked pair Diede de Groot and Aniek Van Koot (both Netherlands), in the semifinals. Montjane and Shuker closed out a three-set win in just under an hour.

To date, Montjane has reached the doubles final of a Grand Slam but has yet to chalk up a victory. She was runner-up earlier this year at the Aussie Open, and also at the 2019 US Open.

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